Tuesday, July 28, 2009
Telling My Story
Our new minister of music, Tim Cotten, has a blurb in our newly designed Worship Folder asking members to email "their story" to him. So, I laid the folder by my computer as a reminder to do so. Then I thought.....why not tell it on my blog and email him an invitation to read it. So here we go....
I was brought up in Metropolitan Memorial Methodist Church in Washington, DC. At the time it was purported to be the largest Methodist Church in the USA and was built by funds from all other Methodist churches to be the National Methodist Church. I went to Sunday School, MYF, and completed confirmation classes taught by our minister Dr. Latch, before being baptised. I was sprinkled as a baby, just for the record.
Hubs was brought up in Bethlehem United Methodist Church in downtown Byrdtown and we joined not long after we married.
We had twins, Todd and Wayne, in 1967. Shortly after birth Todd was exposed to a virus and suffered brain damage in his occipital lobe leaving him visually impaired.
In 1971, our minister, Mr. Harmon, arranged for our church to have a Lay Witness Mission. We weren't familiar with the term but the church bought into it. I think about 30 lay people came and stayed with church members for the weekend. Joe and Louise McBride and their son George stayed with us.
The weekend has many components one of them being having a "Neighborhood Coffee"....our neighbor, Mary Louise Byrd, a retired first grade teacher invited us to hers. Mrs. Byrd was my image of a godly woman (white hair, in a bun, speaks softly, goes to church etc...) She gave her testimony at that coffee. In college she went to a tent revival and realized "her righteousness was as filthy rags" and she needed a Savior.
Ah, Ha, moment as Oprah would say. I had been under conviction for some time that I needed to be saved But....my intellectual, cosmopolitan, Washington DC self did not recognize the term Saved and thought it to be a hold over from Elmer Gantry. But that image was hard to reconcile with Mary Louise Byrd AND THE WORD OF GOD THAT SAYS "ALL have sinned and come short of the glory of God."
Saturday night as we sat around my breakfast room table with our guests, Joe and Louise McBride. I confessed to them that I was afraid to give my life to God. He might put cancer on me or send me to Africa.....who knew. They wisely pointed me to scripture, specifically "he who has the faith as a mustard seed".....I'd seen mustard seed jewelry (it was a 50's thing) and I knew I didn't have THAT much faith.
BUT God....Joe and Louise had just returned from a trip to Israel and guess what they brought back...real....uncommercial mustard seeds....and yep they are tee tiny....like grain of pepper and Yep I had that much faith!
We bowed and prayed. The next day I went to the altar and not long after got baptized By immersion. And the rest, as they say, is His Story.